Tornado Warning

As I get ready to release my new book, "Deadly Dose," I am keenly aware of how my two disparate worlds – news and family, often collide ...

"Daddy, get out of your car and get in a ditch," I hear my oldest daughter say to her father on the cell phone. "There's a tornado coming."

We are in our basement. By we, I mean myself, my two daughters, two dogs and a fish. Yes, I said a fish. His name is Purple Buddy, but that's another story entirely. My 5-year-old sobbed crocodile tears until I agreed to bring him and his nasty bowl filled with murky water (not my job to clean it) downstairs with us.

My second grader studied weather in school and when she saw the words "TORNADO WARNING" flash across the bottom of the screen on WRAL, the station I work for, it was down to the basement.

We huddled around the small television in our playroom watching the wall-to-wall coverage of the storm complete with enthused weathermen and brightly colored maps showing us in the danger zone.

When they finally lifted the warning for our area I had to convince my daughters it was safe to go back upstairs.

"How do you know?" she pleaded.

"Because they said so on WRAL," I coaxed her thinking about the half-made dinner spread across the kitchen counter.

"Then it must be true," she said wiping away her tears and heading for the stairs with the two dogs in tow.


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